“Annihilation has no terrors for me, because I have already tried it before I was born -a hundred million years -and I have suffered more in an hour, in this life, than I remember to have suffered in the whole hundred million years put together. There was a peace, a serenity, an absence of all sense of responsibility, an absence of worry, an absence of care, grief, perplexity; and the presence of a deep content and unbroken satisfaction in that hundred million years of holiday which I look back upon with a tender longing and with a grateful desire to resume, when the opportunity comes.” ― Mark Twain, The Autobiography of Mark Twain
Since I completely missed Mark Twain’s birthday yesterday (surely he didn’t mind), I thought a short post on the day after would be appropriate. We all ought to spend more time with clever people—people who don’t just say clever things but people who look at the world in a certain way that help us see what was right in front of us all along. Twain was certainly clever in that way.
Dead now longer than he was alive, I imagine he’s made the most of the opportunity for peace and serenity that comes from passing from this world. I’m not particularly ready to join him, but take his words to heart. We weren’t alive far longer that we have been, and so it will be on the other side. We ought to be at peace with that, while using this unique opportunity to live as boldly as we can. Happy belated Birthday, Mr. Twain.